DoD Biodiversity Conservation Handbook
Chapters:Chapter 1Chapter 2Chapter 3Chapter 4Chapter 5Chapter 6Chapter 7Chapter 8Chapter 9Chapter 10Chapter 11IntroductionCase StudiesAcknowledgements
Chapter 2: Understanding Conservation Science; By  Bob Unnasch

Chapter 2 Sources of Information

The Nature Conservancy's Conservation Gateway
TNC's web portal contains a diversity of information on conservation planning at the project, landscape, eco-regional, and major habitat scales. tnc's Conservation Action Planning software package is available for download. The gateway also provides access to several thousand documents on a diversity of conservation topics.

Patuxent Site and Software
The U.S. Geological Survey's Patuxent Wildlife Research Center maintains a software library for resources managers. The majority of the titles are for wildlife research and monitoring, but some (e.g. “Distance”) can be utilized for estimating abundance of plants or physical phenomenon.

Data Analysis
This web page, provided by the University of Texas, includes a listing of a wide variety of free statistical packages.

Ecological Modeling
  • Vensim ( is a powerful, free software package that enables the development of state-transition and other stock/flow models.
  • Stella ( is the state-of-the-art software for developing complex ecological models— the current model of the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem was developed using Stella.
  • The Conservation Measures Partnership ( site provides access to Miradi, an open source conservation planning software. It also provides a “Rosetta stone” document that compares the conservation planning protocols developed by all the large conservation organizations.
NatureServe Explorer
This website, a searchable database maintained by NatureServe, provides authoritative information on more than 70,000 plants, animals, and ecosystems of the United States and Canada. Explorer includes particularly in-depth coverage for rare and endangered species.

NatureServe Vista
NatureServe Vista is a decision support system developed by NatureServe that integrates conservation information with land use patterns and policies, providing planners, resource managers, and communities with tools to help manage their natural resources. It enables users to create, evaluate, implement, and monitor land use and resource management plans that operate within the existing economic, social, and political context to achieve conservation goals.

© Copyright 2008. NatureServe.

Sections In This Chapter

About This Chapter's Author
Bob Unnasch is Senior Conservation Scientist, The Nature Conservancy

Literature Cited
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